Russian 20-year arms exports amount to USD180 billion

Since 2000, Russia’s sole arms exporter, JSC Rosoboronexport (a subsidiary of state corporation Rostec), has delivered defense hardware worth some USD180 billion to its foreign customers, a spokesperson for the company told the TASS news agency on November 24 : “Since 2000, the [Rosoboronexport] company has exported systems worth approximately USD180 billion,” he said.
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T-90MS main battle tank in a live demonstration at IDEX 2013 defense exhibition in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (Picture source: Army Recognition)

According to the spokesperson, military aviation dominates the company’s exports. The Rosoboronexport’s portfolio of fixed-wing combat aerial platforms includes two principal items, namely, Sukhoi Su-30 (NATO reporting name: Flanker-H) multirole combat aircraft and Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29 (Fulcrum) light tactical fighter jet. The Su-30SME is the latest member of the Su-30 family of export-oriented multirole combat aircraft. The fighter jet is an analogue of Sukhoi Su-30SM aircraft, which is being operated by the Russian Aerospace Forces (VKS). The MiG-29 tactical fighter is also in high demand on the global arms market. Its latest iteration, the MiG-35, broke cover at the MAKS 2019 international aerospace show.

The Rosoboronexport’s rotary-wing aviation portfolio is primarily built of Mil Mi-17V-5/Mi-171Sh (Hip-H) utility rotorcraft, Mil Mi-26T2 (Halo) super-heavy transport helicopters, Mil Mi-35M (Hind-E) gunships, Mi-28NE (Havoc-B) ‘Night Hunter’ attack helicopters, and Kamov Ka-52 (Hokum-B) combat-reconnaissance helicopters. In recent years, the company has brought to the market Kamov Ka-226T (Hoodlum) light utility helicopter. Those assets have recently been reinforced with the newest Mil Mi-38T utility rotorcraft. According to the company’s press department, the first contract for deliveries of this platform to a foreign customer has already been signed.

Rosoboronexport is a also a major provider of land systems. Russia’s cluster of export-oriented MBTs is built of the baseline T-90S and the upgraded T-90MS tanks. The T-14 Armata new-generation MBT is on its way to the global market; however, it has yet to receive a license permitting the platform’s export to foreign countries. Therefore, it is the T-90MS MBT that holds the title of the most sophisticated ready-use heavy machine developed by the Russian industry. The T-90MS is a net-centric land system that features an advanced fire-control unit with a thermal imager and a number of sophisticated sensors. Its smoothbore gun allows the tank’s crew to fire a wide range of 125 mm munitions and anti-tank guided missiles.

Since 2000, Russia’s exports of air defense have amounted to some USD30 billion. The country’s industry has managed to build up a well-balanced portfolio of air defense weapon that form a multilayered network.

Rosoboronexport is a player on the market of naval systems. In recent years, Russia’s shipbuilding industry has placed an emphasis on the development of its portfolio of frigates, various boats, mobile coastal defense missile (MCDM) systems, and naval weapons.

It should also be mentioned that Russia has dramatically upgraded its small arms portfolio in recent years. Previously, it primarily consisted of Kalashnikov AK-100th family of assault rifles and carbines, Dragunov 7.62 mm sniper rifles (SVD), Kalashnikov PKM and Pecheneg 7.62 mm general-purpose machineguns (GPMG), and Kalashnikov RPK light machineguns (LMG). Now this portfolio includes both brand new and upgraded weapons. The current spectrum of Russian-made export-oriented firearms comprises of (Kalashnikov AK200th family of firearms (including AK203 7.62mm assault rifles), cutting-edge AK-15 7.62mm assault rifle, the upgraded Dragunov sniper rifle (SVDM), and 6S8 12.7mm anti-material rifle. However, some of those export-oriented weapons fire traditional Russian ammunition, in particular, 5.45×39 (AK200 and AK-12), 7.62×54R (PKM and Pecheneg GPMGs and SVDM sniper rifle), and 12.7×108 (6S8 anti-material rifle).

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